Binge drinking to be among topics of new training for UK Greek members


LEXINGTON, Ky. — Students in fraternities and sororities at the University of Kentucky will undergo new, required training following the death of student Thomas “Lofton” Hazelwood, who passed away from presumed alcohol toxicity earlier this week. 

What You Need To Know

  • A University of Kentucky student died this week of presumed alcohol poisoning
  • As a result, UK will require fraternity and sorority members to undergo required training
  • The training will touch on hazing prevention
  • The training will also include information on how to look after fellow students who have been drinking


Hazelwood’s death sparked larger conversations regarding the broader problem of binge drinking. Lexington emergency physician, Dr. Ryan Stanton, said it’s all too common on college campuses, particularly in Greek life.

“We often, especially at the beginning of the school year see a lot of young people come in with overindulgence in alcohol whether it is binge drinking, drinking game, competitions, whatever it may be, we see a lot of young people in the emergency department,” said Stanton.

He said the problem often occurs when people drink too much in a short amount of time. 

U.K. will be stressing that point and more during upcoming, required training for fraternity and sorority members. Acting associate vice president for student well-being, Corrine Williams said it will focus on hazing prevention, university expectations and bystander intervention.

“Try to take care of each other. Particularly when it comes to alcohol poisoning or toxicity one of the key things is to make sure to not leave a person alone,” said Williams. “If you are unable to stay with that person, make sure someone else is with them.”

If you are with someone who has been drinking, Dr. Stanton said you should be on the lookout for the following symptoms:

  • Passing out
  • Discolored skin
  • Throwing up

“Just look to make sure, if someone is vomiting, they are able to protect it to clear that airway. We don’t want people laying flat on their back if they are unconscious because they can’t clear that. We also don’t necessarily want people laying flat on their stomach as well,” said Dr. Stanton.

He said, if it gets to that point, it is time to seek professional medical help.

Williams said he knows students sometimes do not seek help for fear of getting in trouble. She wants them to know Kentucky does have a medical amnesty law. That does not mean there could not be other forms of consequences, but she said saving fellow students has to be a top priority.

The University of Kentucky said the training is among several new initiatives, and these are just the first steps. We will continue to follow this developing story.






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